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The fast-food franchise Popeyes has been experiencing astonishing demand for their newly introduced chicken sandwich. Popeyes is famous for selling pieces of fried chicken, similar to KFC. Unlike in the rest of the world, chicken sandwiches have never been popular at KFC or Popeyes in the US. While the restaurants have wide varieties of chicken sandwiches around the world, the US market has never embraced them. This changed recently when Popeyes introduced a new spicy chicken sandwich.

Popeyes restaurants across America have been running out of the sandwiches every day. Many restaurants have been experiencing long lines of customers trying to get a sandwich before they sell out. Restaurants have even been forced to put signs on their doors when they run out of sandwiches in order to deter would-be customers.

The new sandwich has been taking the US by storm and some people have been trying to take advantage of the craze. Posts on social media have shown people stood outside of Popeyes restaurants with dozens of chicken sandwiches, attempting to resell them to disappointed customers. One teenage boy used the opportunity to register people to vote in the next presidential election. He and a group of volunteers went to Popeyes restaurants and asked waiting customers to fill out voter registration forms. The craze has perplexed people in other countries where chicken sandwiches have been available from Popeyes, KFC and other chicken restaurants for many years.

The chicken sandwich has followed a multitude of other fast food introductions in the US in 2019. Burger King, KFC and many other fast-food restaurants have been introducing plant-based meat versions of their food. KFC introduced a new vegan ‘chicken’ bucket which is made from plant-based chicken and Burger King introduced a new plant-based Whopper. These new plant-based meat substitutes have been popular with customers. Both chains have been running out of the new products, similar to the chicken sandwiches at Popeyes.

Popeyes has been taking advantage of the current popularity by encouraging people to download their app. They have advertised that customers can easily check the app to find out which locations have sold out of the new spicy chicken burger.

Difficult words

Franchise (n): A business chain that offers the same services in several locations.

Astonishing (adj): Amazing in a surprising way.

Embrace (v): To fully accept something.

Deter (v): To discourage someone or something away from something else.

Craze (n): A sudden and widespread enthusiasm for something.

Perplexed (adj): Confused, unable to understand.

Multitude (n): A large amount.

Vegan (adj) To not use or eat anything that has been produced using a living thing.

Substitute (n): An alternative.

Activities

For listening practise, listen to the recorded article here:

British English:

American English:

Match the Synonym!

1. Franchise A. Accept
2. Astonishing B. Widespread obsession.
3. Embrace C. Many
4. Deter D. Alternative
5. Craze E. Confused
6. Perplexed F. No animal products.
7. Multitude G. Chain
8. Vegan H. Discourage
9. Substitute I. Amazing

True or False?

1. Popeyes has recently introduced a new chicken salad. T / F

2. Chicken sandwiches are not popular outside of America. T / F

3. Popeyes restaurants have been running out of sandwiches daily. T / F

4.  The lines at Popeyes have recently been quite short. T / F

5. Restaurants have been displaying signs to show they have run out of sandwiches. T / F

6. Some people have been reselling the chicken burger outside the restaurants. T / F

7. An old woman has been registering people to vote while they wait in line. T / F

8. People in other countries have not been discussing the popularity of this sandwich. T / F

9. Many other fast-food restaurants have introduced new items to their menu recently. T / F

10. Plant-based menu items have not been popular in the U.S. T / F

Unscramble the sentence!

1. of / pieces / fried chicken / Popeyes / famous / is / selling / for

2. America / have / across / out / been / Popeyes restaurants / running

3. been / has / US / storm / The / taking / new sandwich / the / by

4. stood / people / have / Posts / shown / on / outside / social media

5. been / the / new products / of / running / out / have / Both / chains

Listening and Vocabulary

Listen to the article and fill in the words OR practice vocabulary and fill in the words.

British English:

American English:

Advantage Fast Food Introduced
Varieties Similar Across
Bucket Presidential Forced

The fast-food franchise Popeyes has been experiencing astonishing demand for their newly (1)________________ chicken sandwich. Popeyes is famous for selling pieces of fried chicken, similar to KFC. Unlike in the rest of the world, chicken sandwiches have never been popular at KFC or Popeyes in the US. While the restaurants have wide (2)______________ of chicken sandwiches around the world, the US market has never embraced them. This changed recently when Popeyes introduced a new spicy chicken sandwich.

Popeyes restaurants (3)___________ America have been running out of the sandwiches every day. Many restaurants have been experiencing long lines of customers trying to get a sandwich before they sell out. Restaurants have even been (4)__________ to put signs on their doors when they run out of sandwiches in order to deter would-be customers.

The new sandwich has been taking the US by storm and some people have been trying to take (5)_______________ of the craze. Posts on social media have shown people stood outside of Popeyes restaurants with dozens of chicken sandwiches, attempting to resell them to disappointed customers. One teenage boy used the opportunity to register people to vote in the next (6)_________________ election. He and a group of volunteers went to Popeyes restaurants and asked waiting customers to fill out voter registration forms. The craze has perplexed people in other countries where chicken sandwiches have been available from Popeyes, KFC and other chicken restaurants for many years.

The chicken sandwich has followed a multitude of other (7)_____________ introductions in the US in 2019. Burger King, KFC and many other fast-food restaurants have been introducing plant-based meat versions of their food. KFC introduced a new vegan ‘chicken’ (8)___________ which is made from plant-based chicken and Burger King introduced a new plant-based Whopper. These new plant-based meat substitutes have been popular with customers. Both chains have been running out of the new products, similar to the chicken sandwiches at Popeyes.

Popeyes has been taking advantage of the current popularity by encouraging people to download their app. They have (9)_____________ that customers can easily check the app to find out which locations have sold out of the new spicy chicken burger.

Conversation Questions

Take turns speaking with a partner or try to answer on your own:

1. Did you find this article interesting? Why or why not?
2. Did you learn anything new from this article? If so, what?
3. What do you think of this story?
4. Have you ever eaten at Popeyes?
5. Is there a famous chicken chain in your country?
6. What is a popular fast food in your country?
7. Do you think chicken burgers or regular fried chicken would be more popular in your country?
8. What do you think about the excitement for this chicken sandwich?
9. What do you think about the boy registering people to vote?
10. What is another way people could take advantage of this craze?
11. Has there been a similar craze for a product in your country?
12. Have you ever waited in a long line for a popular product?
13. Should people limit how much fast food they eat?
14. Would you like to try the plant-based fast food options?
15. What is a healthy alternative to fast food?
16. Would you ever consider being a vegetarian or vegan?
17. What international food is popular in your country?
18. Does your country have famous food?
19. Are restaurant chains bad for diversity?
20. Do you have any questions for the people who have waited in line?